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Establishing critical success factors for information literacy - a methodology (pecha kucha). Sen & Corrall


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Presented at LILAC 2010

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Establishing critical success factors for information literacy - a methodology (pecha kucha). Sen & Corrall

  1. 1. Establishing Critical Success Factors for Information Literacy Barbara Sen and Sheila Corrall CRITICAL SUCCESS FACTORS
  2. 2. What are Critical Success Factors? •  The key areas of activity where performance will result in the success or failure of an organisation, service or unit •  Areas that need constant and careful attention from managers and continual measurement of performance •  A set of distinct and specific issues that taken together are both necessary and sufficient to achieve the mission •  Original focus on clarifying managers’ information needs in a changing competitive environment, but now used to support planning, operations and quality management ‘the few key areas where “things must go right”...’ © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 2 CFSs – Introduction
  3. 3. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 3 CSFs – Definition Critical Success Factors (CSFs) ‘CSFs are the limited number of areas in which satisfactory results will ensure successful competitive performance for the individual, department or organization.’ ‘…the few key areas where "things must go right" for the business to flourish and for the manager's goals to be attained.’ (Rockart and Bullen, 1981:7)
  4. 4. Why should we use CSFs for IL? •  Practitioners generally know implicitly what is important, but it is easy to lose sight of what is critical to success − and things change over time •  CSFs can be used in all sizes and types of organisation − and deployed at organisational, departmental, service, team and individual levels •  Data collected in even a smallscale CSF exercise can be surprisingly rich and revealing − and provide valuable guidance for service direction, resource allocation and staff development © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 4 CSFs – Motivation
  5. 5. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 5 Example: Published case study CSFs for IL @ Australian National University •  An open vision from above •  Dedicated funding •  Administrative change as a catalyst •  Dedicated staff •  Partnerships •  Focus •  Freedom to interpret •  Street cred (Henty and Visser, 2003)
  6. 6. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 6 Vision or guiding philosophy what we want to be Mission what we want to achieve Core processes the activities we need to perform particularly well to achieve it Core values and beliefs who we want to be Purpose what we are here for Strategies and plans how we are going to achieve it Critical Success Factors what we need to achieve it L E A D E R S H I P P O L I C Y & S T R A T E G Y (Oakland, 2004) CSFs in context
  7. 7. CSF – Sources and Types Five primary sources •  The sector in which an organisation operates •  The organisation’s peers and its competitive strategy •  The general environment and business climate, e.g. social, technological, economic and political factors •  Temporary conditions or situations at a particular time •  Different levels of management within an organisation Four key dimensions •  Internal versus external •  Monitoring versus building or adapting (Rockart & Bullen, 1981) © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 7
  8. 8. Guidelines for CSFs •  Aim is to produce a maximum of eight statements •  Each statement must identify only one specific factor – ‘and’ is not allowed (except in an explanatory clause) •  They must be clear, concise and easy to understand, so that meanings are not open to different interpretations •  Statements can cover both strategic and tactical issues •  They are often expressed in the form ‘We must have…’ or ‘We need…’ (Caralli, 2004; Oakland, 2004) © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 8 CSFs – Methodology
  9. 9. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 9 Reflecting on our experience CSFs for IL @ the University of Sheffield •  Explicit linking of IL to current institutional concerns •  Formal incorporation of IL in core business strategy •  Senior academics acting as institutional IL champions •  Departmental contacts serving as local IL advocates •  Financial incentives for academics to launch IL projects •  Dedicated specialist support to take IL work forward •  IL network group to focus and co-ordinate effort •  Stakeholder-based multi-professional IL partnership
  10. 10. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 10 Two main recognised methods Quick method •  group brainstorming −  can be done in a relatively short time In-depth method •  interviews and document analysis •  six-stage process −  more time-consuming −  needs research skills CSF – Methodology Other methods used include individual or group reflection and questionnaire surveys to identify service priorities
  11. 11. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 11 CSFs – Process Quick brainstorming method 1.  Brainstorm to produce a list of all factors which have an impact on your service’s information skills programme 2.  Group the impacts into related areas 3.  Create a statement for each area 4.  Agree a set of about six statements for your group by eliminating duplication and the less important 5.  Suggest practical performance measures relating to each statement (Town, 2003)
  12. 12. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 12 Brainstorming in small groups CSFs for IL @ a University Library in the UK •  Staff with the skills, knowledge, understanding and motivation to teach •  Resources sufficient to deliver and develop information skills education •  Student outcomes which are clearly identified •  Partnerships with a range of stakeholders •  Strategic framework which embeds IS in the curriculum •  Sustainable pedagogic quality through effective programme designs (Town, 2003)
  13. 13. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 13 CSFs – Process In-depth analysis method 1.  Defining the scope and selecting the participants 2.  Collecting the data (document analysis, interviews) 3.  Organising the data – removing identities and irrelevant comments, forming raw data into activity statements 4.  Analysing the data – identifying common characteristics and forming activity statements into affinity groupings 5.  Analysing the CSFs – developing supporting themes 6.  Deriving the CSFs – refining and combining summary themes into as few CSFs as possible (around 5 to 7)
  14. 14. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 14 Example: Interview questions In relation to Information Literacy… •  what is your personal mission and role in the service? •  what are the critical success factors in your job just now? •  in what one, two or three areas would failure to perform well hurt you the most? •  where would you most hate to see something go wrong? •  assume that you are on a desert island with no access to the outside world, what would you most want to know when you were rescued three months later? •  what are your most critical goals and objectives? •  what are your three greatest problems or obstacles? (adapted from Caralli, 2004)
  15. 15. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 15 Example: Activity statements Raw data ‘…we have to be more professional in the way we promote the library and our information literacy support. I see what other people do in personalising their websites and communications to users – we should be thinking on those lines, being more interactive with our online users, not just being a shop window website.’ Activity statements •  Present a more professional image •  See each user as an individual •  Benchmark against other organisations •  Develop e-marketing strategies to promote IL agenda
  16. 16. Example: Affinity groupings Activity statements •  Make IL relevant to courses •  Focus on contextualised learning (related to disciplines/courses) •  Connect with the real world •  Integrate IL in education and research •  Identify audiences for IL efforts •  Promote our IL activities •  Communicate value of IL to stakeholders Themes Integrated contextualised learning Marketing of IL © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 16
  17. 17. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 17 Example: Brainstorm/In-depth CSFs for IL @ a University Library in Norway We must have •  Common understanding of IL among library staff •  Competent staff (IL, pedagogy, discipline knowledge) •  A functional library catalogue •  Teaching resources (materials, equipment, facilities) •  Active interested leadership (library, university) •  Strong formalised partnerships (faculty, IT department) •  Effective marketing of IL •  Integrated contextualised real-world learning
  18. 18. Value and use of CSFs Benefits to IL practitioners •  Establishing CSFs for IL will make your key areas of activity explicit •  You can then use your CSFs: −  to inform your strategies and plans −  to focus your resources and activities −  to aid communication with stakeholders −  to establish performance measures for quality management of IL activities © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 18
  19. 19. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 19 CSFs – References/Reading Caralli, R.A. (2004) The Critical Success Factor Method. Carnegie Mellon Software Engineering Institute. http:// [e.g. Chapter 4, ‘A CSF primer’, pp.11-28; Appendix A, ‘CSF method description’, pp. 45-90.] Daniel, D.R. (1961) ‘Management information crisis’, Harvard Business Review, 39 (5), 111-121. Henty, M. & Visser, K. (2003) ‘Saddling the octopus: critical success factors for the Information Literacy Program at the Australian National University’, Proceedings of the EDUCAUSE in Australasia 2003 Conference.
  20. 20. © Sheila Corrall and Barbara Sen 2010 Slide 20 CSFs – References/Reading Oakland, J.S. (2004) Oakland on Quality Management. Amsterdam: Elsevier Butterworth-Heinemann. Rockart, J. & Bullen, C. (1981) A Primer on Critical Success Factors, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sloan School of Management. Sen, B.A. & Taylor, R. (2007) ‘Determining the information needs of small and medium-sized enterprises: a critical success factor analysis’, Information Research, 12 (4). Town, J.S. (2003) ‘Information literacy: definition, measurement, impact’, in Martin, A. & Rader, H. (eds) Information and IT Literacy, pp. 53-65. London: Facet.